Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger build guide – spells, subclass, ability score

Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger build guide – spells, subclass, ability score
Trent Cannon Updated on by

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Our Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger build guide will help you make the most out of this diverse class. Few figures are as intrinsically linked to the fantasy genre as Rangers, so their inclusion in Baldur’s Gate 3 isn’t much of a surprise. Unlike in previous games, here they have been updated for the most recent version of Dungeons & Dragons, so they’ve changed pretty drastically from previous entries in the series.

Rangers in Baldur’s Gate 3 lore offer a taste of the Druid’s nature-based spellcasting power and the Fighter’s prowess with ranged weapons. Like most other Baldur’s Gate 3 classes, Rangers get a choice of a subclass as they level up that will help define their role in the party going forward, but there are build choices at Level 1 that can have a big impact on their usefulness in the game.

Baldur's Gate 3 Ranger build: Minsc smiling

Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger best build

A Ranger serves two purposes in Baldur’s Gate 3. First, they provide survival, animal handling, and other nature-based skill checks for the party. Their second main use is their skill with ranged weapons, particularly bows. As such, you’ll want your two highest ability scores to be Wisdom and Dexterity, with Constitution a close third.

This can be done with the help of Baldur’s Gate 3 feats. At level 4, level 8, and level 12, you can use the Ability Improvement feat to gain two ability points for the Ranger class. Sharpshooter is another good feat for Rangers that trades accuracy (-5 to attack roll) for damage (+10 damage on hit). This can be disabled if you want accurate but weaker shots too.

At Level 1, you choose both a Favoured Enemy and Natural Explorer. Favoured Enemy gives new skill proficiencies and other perks, such as access to cantrips or armour proficiencies. Natural Explorer grants perks based on a Ranger’s preferred terrain.

Ranger Skill Proficiencies

Every class in BG3 has skills they are good at. Pairing the right equipment with the class in mind is essential to both combat and interacting with the Forgotten Realms. Here are the skill proficiencies of the Ranger in Baldur’s Gate 3:

  • Weapons – Simple Weapons, Martial Weapons
  • Armour – Light Armor, Medium Armor, Shields
  • Skills – Choose three from Animal Handling, Athletics, Insight, Investigation, Nature, Perception, Stealth, and Survival
  • Saving Throws – Strength, Dexterity

Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Favoured Enemy

Unlike the tabletop version of the game, Baldur’s Gate 3 Rangers have a more limited choice for Favoured Enemy. Instead of picking things like Goblins or Orcs, their choice impacts their background and skill proficiencies.

  • Bounty Hunter – Gain Proficiency in Investigation. Creatures hit with Ensnaring Strike have Disadvantage on their Saving Throw.
  • Keeper of the Veil – Gain Proficiency in Arcana. You can cast Protection from Evil and Good.
  • Mage Breaker – Gain Proficiency in Arcana. You can cast True Strike.
  • Ranger Knight – Gain Proficiency in History and Heavy Armour.
  • Sanctified Stalker – Gain Proficiency in Religion. You can cast Sacred Flame.

Of these, we would suggest Bounty Hunter. Ensnaring Strike is one of the best Ranger spells in the game and you’ll use it often, so making it harder for characters to pass the saving throw to resist it will be a huge help.

Baldur's Gate 3 ranger build: Screenshot from character creation

Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Natural Explorer

There are five natural terrains you can choose as your Ranger’s preferred environment. They will get bonuses depending on which you choose.

  • Beast Tamer – Gain Find Familiar without expending a spell slot.
  • Urban Tracker – Gain proficiency in Sleight of Hand checks.
  • Wasteland Wanderer – Cold – Gain Resistance to Cold Damage.
  • Wasteland Wanderer – Fire – Gain Resistance to Fire Damage.
  • Wasteland Wanderer ­– Poison – Gain Resistance to Poison Damage.

Any of these choices can be useful for a Ranger in Baldur’s Gate 3 since each of those environments come into play. If you choose not to have a Rogue in your party, then we would suggest Urban Tracker to help you cover their thievery skills. Otherwise, we would suggest Wasteland Wanderer – Fire as that gives you resistance to the most spells in the game.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger Fighting Style

At Level 2, Rangers choose a Fighting Style. This choice will give them bonuses when using certain weapons or armour and can’t be changed later, so it is vital that you are happy with your choice.

  • Archery – Gain +2 bonus to ranged weapon attack rolls.
  • Defence – Gain +1 bonus to your Armour Class while wearing armour.
  • Duelling – Deal +2 damage when wielding a melee weapon in one hand and no other weapon. 
  • Two-Weapon Fighting – Add your Ability Modifier to damage rolls made with your off-hand weapon.

If you plan on keeping your Ranger on the outskirts of the battle, we suggest taking Archery at this level. If you want to have a more melee-focused character, pick Two-Weapon Fighting to give yourself increased damage output.

Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger subclasses

Like most classes in Baldur’s Gate 3, Rangers get to pick a subclass at Level 3. These each offer specific perks and can massively change the way your character plays, so it is worth considering all your options.

  • Beast Master – Summon an animal companion to join your party in battle. You can pick from Bear, Boar, Dire Raven, Wolf, or Wolf Spider.
  • Gloom Stalker – Gain enhanced mobility and bonus damage on your first turn in combat.
  • Hunter – Focus on increasing weapon damage, including gaining additional Hunter’s Prey attacks each round at higher levels.

Our suggestion is to take Beast Master for your Ranger. While the animal companion isn’t as strong as a full party member, it can be vital to pinning down enemies and providing advantage for your party’s rogues. Otherwise, pick Gloom Stalker for the extra mobility and increased damage.

Best Baldur’s Gate 3 Ranger spells

While Rangers don’t get the same range of spells that Druids or Clerics get, they do get some unique and powerful spells to cast. The best spells for Rangers in Baldur’s Gate 3 are:

  • Ensnaring Strike
  • Cure Wounds
  • Hunter’s Mark
  • Speak With Animals
  • Pass Without Trace
  • Lightning Arrow

Best Ranger Ability Scores

Rangers should focus on Dexterity first since all their weapon attacks and many of their skills run off of the stat. Wisdom is their spellcasting ability, so having a high Wisdom will make their spells harder to resist. The best ability scores for Rangers are:


Now that you’ve got a Ranger fit for the wilds of Baldur’s Gate 3, you can brush up on some of the other classes. We have everything you need to know for the perfect Baldur’s Gate 3 Sorcerer build and a breakdown of the best spells in the Baldur’s Gate 3. While most Baldur’s Gate 3 races can work with any class, there are some distinct advantages to each one that are worth investigating.

What is the best Ranger subclass in Baldur’s Gate 3?

The best subclass for the Ranger is the Beast Master in Baldur’s Gate 3.

What is the best race for the Ranger in Baldur’s Gate 3?

The Wood Elf is the best race for the Ranger in BG3.